Date of Award

Fall 12-14-2018

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Humanities (PhD)


African American Studies, Africana Women's Studies, and History

First Advisor

Viktor Osinubi, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Alan Colon, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Charmaine Patterson, Ph.D.


Hurricane Katrina made landfall 60 miles east of New Orleans, Louisiana, on August 29, 2005. The storm revealed the reality of the socio-economic state of tens of thousands of African Americans living in the city of New Orleans, especially African-American women. This study examines the state of development of African-American women who lived in the Lower 9th Ward area of New Orleans prior to, during, and after Hurricane Katrina. This study was based on the premise that African-American women who lived in the Lower 9th Ward were significantly more affected by Hurricane Katrina than any other group in the area because of their race, class, gender, and state of development. A narrative analysis was chosen as the method for this study. The data were collected from interviews was analyzed to explore how Hurricane Katrina impacted these women’s state of development, or the lack thereof. The researcher found that Lower 9th Ward African-American women were impacted by Hurricane Katrina more than any other group because of their underdeveloped state. The conclusions drawn from the findings suggest that the African-American women from the Lower 9th Ward area lived a life comparable to that of women in developing countries, while living in a First World country. The reality of their underdeveloped state allowed for Hurricane Katrina to impact them more negatively than any other group by leaving them unable to regain normalcy in some areas of their lives, especially those areas influenced by their race, class, and gender.